ALEXANDRIA, VA – Yesterday, June 10, the Alexandria City School Board announced the resignation of Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) Superintendent Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr., effective August 31, 2022. This announcement was made after a board meeting yesterday morning, followed by a message sent via email from Dr. Hutchings to ACPS staff and families.
“It has been both an honor and a pleasure to work alongside Dr. Gregory C. Hutchings, Jr. He has led our school division during extremely tumultuous times and, in doing so, has modeled for all of us what it means to lead with vision, integrity, and passion,” said School Board Chair Meagan L. Alderton. “Alexandria City Public Schools has benefited tremendously from his leadership. As a board, we are sad to see him go, but we wish him the very best in his future endeavors. I have no doubt that we will see him doing great things that will impact public education beyond the boundaries of Alexandria City Public Schools.”
A 1995 graduate of Alexandria City High School, Dr. Hutchings has served as ACPS superintendent since July 2018. Before that, he held various positions in the school division, including as director of pre-K-12 initiatives and director of middle school programs. Between 2013 and 2018, he was superintendent of Shaker Heights Schools, located in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. He has also served as teacher, assistant principal, and principal at the middle and high school levels in Virginia and Tennessee.
Reflecting on his time with ACPS, Dr. Hutchings said, “It has been an honor and a privilege to serve the students, staff, families, and community of Alexandria. Thank you for the opportunity to lead this amazing community of educators and to serve as an example to our students, so that they, too, can have their dream job. While I will no longer stand at the helm of ACPS to lead our team, I will continue to support the work and care deeply for our students, staff, and families.”
In his four years with ACPS, Dr. Hutchings worked collaboratively with the School Board and the ACPS team to accomplish many significant initiatives. Not only did he achieve full accreditation of all ACPS schools in 2019 for the first time in 20 years, but Dr. Hutchings also helped achieve the Alexandria school division’s highest graduation rate and lowest dropout rate since Virginia began reporting these data in 2008. In 2021, ACPS saw a nine-percentage point increase in the on-time graduation rate, from 82% in 2020 to 91% in 2021. There was also a nine-percent decrease in the overall student dropout rate, from 14% in 2020 to 5% in 2021.
Dr. Hutchings also launched an inclusive, community-wide engagement initiative, known as The Identity Project, to replace two school names from a racist past. T.C. Williams High School was renamed to Alexandria City High School, and Matthew Maury Elementary School was renamed to Naomi L. Brooks Elementary School. In the same vein, Dr. Hutchings initiated an equity policy audit of all ACPS policies that began in 2020-21 to identify systemic racial inequalities. He launched the equity climate survey so that ACPS leaders can hear the perspectives and voices of students, staff, and families on their experiences of the equity climate in our schools, as well as an online equity dashboard that is updated regularly throughout the school year to share precise metrics with stakeholders.
Other important initiatives include, but are not limited to, Dr. Hutchings’ development of operating budgets for FY2022 and FY2023 with a major focus on employee compensation, as well as the establishment of the VIP Awards Program to recognize staff in various categories who exemplify the vision, integrity, and passion that is characteristic of our school division.
Chair Alderton announced that the School Board will appoint an interim superintendent to lead the school division during the search for a permanent superintendent. Dr. Hutchings has pledged to work closely with the School Board over the summer to ensure a smooth transition in leadership to begin the 2022-23 school year.
In a recent tweet from ACPS following the announcement of his resignation, Dr. Hutchings said fondly, “I enjoyed my visits to our schools and working with our staff. Seeing our wonderful students and staff members back in person was breathtaking…I want to wish you all a well-deserved and restorative summer break.”